013 | Electro-Harmonix Oceans 11: A Closer Look at this Diverse Reverb Pedal | Transcript

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Scott Schwertly:
Hello and welcome to episode 13 of The Sonic Renegades podcast, where we're exploring renegade pedals that have changed the music landscape. Today, we're going to be talking about the Oceans 11, a fantastic reverb pedal from Electro-Harmonix. We'll see you on the other side.
Hey, everybody. Scott Schwertly, here, with Siren Pedals.

Austin Bryan:
Hey, guys. Austin Bryan, here, with Siren Pedals.

Scott Schwertly:
And we've got a fun one, today. I know this is a pedal that's often raved about, online. It's the Oceans 11 by Electro-Harmonix.

Austin Bryan:
A ever-growing, popular reverb pedal.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah, it's insane just the reviews that you'll find online, particularly with this pedal being so young.

Austin Bryan:
It's starting to pop up on a lot of boards. Since Electro-Harmonix came out with this thing, it has been popping up, everywhere.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah, I guess that's probably mainly just due to the variety that this thing offers. If you're not familiar with it, basically, it's the Oceans 11. It's got 11 different reverb options, which is insane.

Austin Bryan:
That is jam packed with all the reverb you could need and more.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah. I mean, it's crazy. So, as we mentioned, this pedal is fairly young. I think it goes back to 2018. So, actually, May 29th of 2018 is when this pedal was released to the world by Electro-Harmonix. So quite an infant, compared to most pedals out there.

Austin Bryan:
And it was just rated the best reverb for 2020. So two years, still making headway.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah. That's Guitar Roll, too, right, that [crosstalk 00:01:49]-

Austin Bryan:
Yeah.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah, so pretty impressive for this little, tiny stomp box that we've got, here in front of us. So excited to unpack this one for you guys, today. Given its youth, there aren't a ton of, let's say, legacy players that use this, but there are a few kind of rising stars or even kind of old school stars that they use it, a little bit.

Austin Bryan:
Kim Gordon, from Sonic Youth, had a killer demo video with Electro-Harmonix, and that really just highlighted her style and really highlighted some of the brash and crazy reverb effects that you can get out of this pedal.

Scott Schwertly:
I know you guys have a-

Austin Bryan:
So it was really cool.

Scott Schwertly:
... a style that's pretty similar. So I know you have had a-

Austin Bryan:
Love them. Yeah, noisy.

Scott Schwertly:
... pulled at your heart strings a little bit.

Austin Bryan:
Noisy, man. Getting noisy and getting loud, that's part of it. Yeah.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah, we also have a not as quite as popular as Kim Gordon, but Jack Tatum, Pablo Mondello, those are also big Oceans 11 artists, as well.

Austin Bryan:
And the ever-growing folks that are buying these pedals and putting them on their boards. So.

Scott Schwertly:
Myself included.

Austin Bryan:
It's a great one.

Scott Schwertly:
Awesome. Well, if you're not familiar with this pedal, as we've mentioned, it's loaded with so many features and options. I don't think we're going to unpack every single one, but we'll quickly just highlight some of the bigger things that you'll find on this pedal. Austin, you just want to kind of walk through-

Austin Bryan:
Yeah.

Scott Schwertly:
... some of those 11 options.

Austin Bryan:
So we'll kind of go all the way from the left. So the first one is the hall setting. So for folks that obviously are familiar with reverb, for those that don't, hall, obviously, is going to produce a big, grand hall type of reverb sound, so very big. The spring setting, the next one, according to Electro-Harmonix kind of captures the sound of a classic fender, six G, 15-tube spring reverb. So you get that spring sound, which is very different from the hall.

Moving on to plate. So a plate reverb sound, a classic studio effect, a very, very tasteful and preferred tone. For a lot of older rock folks who might remember some of those older studio recordings, plate reverb was utilized a lot, along with spring. Moving from that, you got the reverse reverb, which is a killer effect in its own right. The way that the notes kind of come back is really, really interesting.
There's an echo mode. So a little bit of that echo type sound, going into the spring reverb. So you've got a difference on the way that your notes kind of bounce off, as maybe opposed to how you would hear on the spring. Moving from that you've got trem, so that kind of gives you an idea, there. Mod, so modulation is the next, which combines the option of either using chorus into the reverb, flange as one of the other options, or a combination of chorus and flange.

And we're not done. So dyna, which gives you the swell, the gate, and a duck type of a reverb effect, which is really cool and a very 80s type of sound. The next one is your auto infinite, so your notes will actually kind of cross fade into each other. So your reverb, per note, can actually transfer into the next note, which is really cool. And then you have shimmer and then you have poly, which are the next two.

So a bunch in this box, and then you actually have a secondary knob mode in here, too, for some hidden parameters. There's a lot. Mode switch to access up to three variations. So talking about the mod, for example, you have chorus, flange, chorus in a flange mode. So that mode switch would give you that variation and all of that option. So a lot-

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah.

Austin Bryan:
... in one box.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah, so much goodness, all in one place. But it's also, you could say, probably it's Achilles heel for the fact that, obviously, a lot of great things to praise, but then some can argue that it's a little overwhelming because there's just so much that you can do with it, that if you're new to pedals, in general, I think this pedal can easily overwhelm someone. But I think, once you get can get past that, it's got so much to offer.

Austin Bryan:
For sure. There's a lot of functions in here. For someone who might not read the manual, typically, and want to just dive right in, it could be a lot to take in. So just be aware of that. One thing I would say that, online, Electro-Harmonix has some settings, provided by Bill Ruppert. So take a look and download that PDF, actually look up those settings and try to give yourself an idea of where to start because it is really hard. I noticed for the first time, trying this out, I kind of had to figure out a starting point. And it was tough not having a manual, right in front of me, to figure that out. So.

Scott Schwertly:
Well, you mentioned, the other day, when we were messing around with it, that it's kind of one of those pedals that you just sit down and tinker with because you can go down so many different rabbit holes with it.

Austin Bryan:
For sure. You can really dial a lot of different tones in. I like to find that sweet spot with the reverb and kind of set it. But if I want to get experimental, maybe I want to set up a different board and maybe play around a little bit more shoe-gaze-y type stuff, I might want to dial in the reverb a little differently, just kind of on a case-by-case basis. So it's great for setting one thing and going, or, if you're just wanting to play around with stuff, you can dial it in the way you like.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah. And I think, even in that one afternoon, when we were sitting down with it just the other day, there's just so much hidden functionality. And even with the whole double tap foot switch that's provided, there's just so much that you can do. Again, it's just kind of endless.

Austin Bryan:
Yeah.

Scott Schwertly:
I mean, you could spend hours with this pedal.

Austin Bryan:
Yeah.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah.

Austin Bryan:
And there's even an infinite plug, so you can actually emphasize more on that auto infinite, if you want to make those notes hold forever. You can do so much with this peddle that most folks might not even be thinking about, when they go to purchase it.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah. It's a fantastic pedal. And for any of those that are interested in actually picking one of these up, I think street value, right now, on one of these is about $150. So not too bad at all.

Austin Bryan:
Man, 11 reverb options and more in one box, for $150. That's great.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah, and you could probably even find one used, maybe even for 99 or 120 on a site like Reverb or something similar.

Austin Bryan:
Best value award, man. This is great.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah, for sure. Well, we're going to go ahead and take this pedal for a spin, for you guys, today. There are 11 different reverb options. We're going to kind of quickly go through them, just give you a quick sampling of what this pedal is really all about. As usual, we got our Telly, here, that we've gotten the office. We're going to plug that in and give you guys a sampling of what this thing sounds like.

Austin Bryan:
11 different reverb sounds, all in one box, and I didn't even touch on the other modes. So that's a lot.

Scott Schwertly:
It is a lot. But you got to love this pedal, right? It's so diverse for being so compact.

Austin Bryan:
It's fantastic. You've got so many different options. If you are kind of a set it and go guy, you can do that. If you want to be experimental, you can do that, too, which a lot of Electro-Harmonix pedals are good with. So yeah.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah. It's a good one, definitely something worth checking out. All right, well there you have it, guys. That's what we wanted to cover, today, with the Oceans 11. Join us, next time, where we actually have a pretty awesome pedal. It's the original, from the 1990s, the Martial Blues Breaker.

Austin Bryan:
The original.

Scott Schwertly:
Yeah, which is ... I love this thing. It's so awesome, having this as a part of our collection.

Austin Bryan:
And you get to hear it, right here on The Sonic Renegades podcast.

Scott Schwertly:
Not a clone, but the original Marshall Blues Breaker. Love this thing.

Austin Bryan:
Can't wait.

Scott Schwertly:
All right, well, see you guys next time.

Austin Bryan:
See you.

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